Welcome back: Fleming names Nick Leftwich as head football coach

‘It’s just an exciting opportunity.’

ROANOKE, Va. – William Fleming has found a new head football coach and it’s a familiar face to the Colonels community. The school staff, along with Roanoke City Schools superintendent Verletta White, introduced Nick Leftwich as next in command at the home of the Colonels.

“Fellas, good to see you all again,” Leftwich said as he addressed a good number of the student athletes from the football team.

Leftwich is no stranger to the William Fleming community. He served as the defensive backs coach from 2019-2021 under then coach Jamar Lovelace. He has since taken the head coaching job at E.C. Glass.

“It’s just an exiting opportunity,” Leftwich said. “I enjoyed my time at Cave Spring and I love those kids. “I’m going to continue to do what I need to do through the remainder of this school year and even moving forward and I was very honest about with them about that today. But, as far as coming back here, these kids here bring an energy and excitement and the welcome I got when walking in told me all I need to know.”

Nick Leftwich (WSLS)

Leftwich spent the last two seasons at Cave Spring where he served as a head coach for the first time in his career. He guided the Knights from a 3-7 campaign his first year to a 6-5 record, including a playoffs appearance in 2022. He says the decision to leave the Knights program was tough but ultimately one that centered on various factors.

“It was well thought out and talked about with my wife and there was a lot to consider with the kids you worked with. But, also looking at it from the perspective of myself.”

Leftwich’s familiarity with the student-athletes at William Fleming makes him a great fit to lead the Colonels and it’s relationships he hopes to build on and strengthen.

“I know these kids and I’ve had the privilege of coaching some of these kids and even teaching some of these kids in my time at Breckenridge Middle School and they’re great student athletes and human beings. The familiarity piece and just being back in it. Leaving here was hard in the first place even to get a head coaching job. I thoroughly enjoyed my time here and this school allowed me to fall in love with the game of football again to be honest with you and the responsibilities I had under Coach Lovelace. So, I’m just excited to be back.”

Regarding lessons he’s learned since becoming a head coach, Leftwich said transparency is key.

“Be upfront with them about the program, them as players, yourself as coach and consistently be there for your kids no matter what it is,” Leftwich said.

Leftwich said he’ll begin his evaluation process regarding assistant coaches and the remainder of the staff soon, but he wants to make moves that are in the best interest of the team. But he does intend to bring a few coaches with him including his dad, Jeff.

Nick Lefwich hugs a William Fleming student-athlete at his introductory press conference (WSLS)

Nick Leftwich is a former Salem High School quarterback who went on to play at UVA-Wise. His coaching stops also included Graham and Tazewell high schools as an assistant.

About the Author

Eric is no stranger to the Roanoke Valley. He is a Roanoke native and proud graduate of William Fleming High School.

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